Top 10 most common nutritional deficiencies and how to fix them

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Top 10 Most Common Nutritional Deficiencies And How To Fix Them

Good nutrition plays a crucial role in overall physical and mental health. Unfortunately, many people may suffer from nutritional deficiencies, which can impede their well-being and prevent them from living the best life possible. To help you understand what types of deficiencies are the most common and how to fix them, here’s a look at the top 10 most common nutritional deficiencies and how to fix them.

Iron Deficiency

One of the most common type of nutritional deficiency, iron deficiency anemia affects 1.6 billion people worldwide. Iron plays an important role in delivering oxygen in your blood and producing energy. Symptoms of iron deficiency include fatigue, pale skin, shortness of breath, headaches and dizziness. Dietary sources of iron include red meat, poultry, fish, beans, spinach and broccoli. You can also take iron supplements to help increase your iron levels.

Vitamin D Deficiency

Vitamin D helps regulate the absorption of calcium to help maintain bone and muscle health. It is also important for your immune system and helps support your body to fight off infectious diseases. Vitamin D deficiency can lead to an increased risk of cancer and heart disease. Up to 50% of people worldwide are thought to be at risk of vitamin D deficiency. Symptoms of deficiency include bone and muscle pain, depression and weakened immunity. The best source of vitamin D comes from the sun, but you can also get it from fatty fish and eggs. Additionally, to prevent vitamin D deficiency, you can take over the counter vitamin D supplements.

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Vitamin A Deficiency

Vitamin A deficiency can lead to impaired vision and blindness and is most prevalent in children in developing countries. Vitamin A also plays an important role in immunity and growth. Symptoms of vitamin A deficiency include dry eyes, night blindness, impaired growth, easy bruising and dry skin. Dietary sources of vitamin A include sweet potatoes, spinach, pumpkin, carrots, and eggs.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Vitamin B12 is essential for the production of healthy red blood cells. B12 deficiency can cause anemia, memory loss and mental fatigue. It is estimated that 5% of the population may be at risk of vitamin B12 deficiency. Symptoms of deficiency include weakness and fatigue, confusion, loss of appetite, nerve damage, and problems with balance. The best dietary sources of B12 include fish, meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products. If you are lacking in B12, you can take a B12 supplement for an easy fix.

Zinc Deficiency

Zinc is an essential mineral for healthy skin, strong immunity, and growth. A zinc deficiency is linked to lower fertility, slow growth in children, skin sores and hair loss. Up to 40% of people worldwide are at risk of zinc deficiency. Dietary sources of zinc include beef, chickpeas, oysters, pumpkin and nuts. Additionally, to increase your zinc intake, you can take zinc supplements.

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Folate Deficiency

Folate, also known as folic acid, is important for red blood cell production, DNA formation and supporting a healthy pregnancy. A folate deficiency can lead to anemia, neural tube defects and impaired cognitive function. The most common sources of folate include dark green leafy vegetables, lentils, oranges and fortified cereal. Folate can also be taken in supplement form.

Selenium Deficiency

Selenium is an important mineral for thyroid and immune health. It helps to protect our cells from damage and is linked to a reduced risk of fertility problems and certain types of cancer. About 1 billion people are thought to be at risk of selenium deficiency. Symptoms of selenium deficiency include muscle weakness and fatigue, infertility, heart palpitations and poor growth. Selenium can be found in brazil nuts, tuna, sardines, eggs and turkey. Selenium supplements are also available.

Calcium Deficiency

Calcium is essential for strong and healthy bones and teeth. About 75% of adults over the age of 50 are at risk of calcium deficiency. Symptoms of deficiency include bone pain, muscle weakness, and tingling in the hands and feet. Dietary sources of calcium include dairy products, leafy greens, almonds, and tofu. Additionally, you can take calcium supplements to help increase your intake.

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Potassium Deficiency

Low potassium levels can lead to muscle cramps and twitching, fatigue and confusion. It is estimated that 1-3% of the world’s population may be at risk of potassium deficiency. Dietary sources of potassium include bananas, potatoes, avocados, squash and yogurt.

Magnesium Deficiency

Magnesium is an essential mineral that helps to regulate blood sugar, nerve and muscle function, and supports a healthy heart. It is estimated that up to 75% of people in the US suffer from magnesium deficiency. Symptoms include fatigue, muscle cramps, anxiety, and insomnia. Dietary sources of magnesium include nuts, seeds, leafy greens, legumes and whole grains. You can also take magnesium supplements to increase your magnesium intake.


Good nutrition is essential for a healthy mind and body. However, many people suffer from nutritional deficiencies, which can lead to a variety of health issues. The top 10 most common nutritional deficiencies and how to fix them include iron deficiency, vitamin D deficiency, vitamin A deficiency, vitamin B12 deficiency, zinc deficiency, folate deficiency, selenium deficiency, calcium deficiency, potassium deficiency, and magnesium deficiency. To help resolve these deficiencies, it is important to get the right balance of vitamins and minerals in your diet and supplement if necessary.